Detyens Shipyard death marks the third fatal accident this past year

NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – 34-year-old David Clark was killed last Monday in an accident at Detyens Shipyard in North Charleston.

Emergency crews responded to a building on McMillan Avenue just before 4:30 p.m. in reference to a worker that fell and suffered traumatic injuries.

According to an incident report from NCPD, Clark was working on the top deck of a ship along with other employees attempting to bring a large object up with the help of a crane.

During that process, the report states a cable wire snapped, causing the object to hit the victim in the face. The impact caused Clark to fall approximately four floors.

The victim suffered severe head trauma as a result. The report states that Clark succumbed to his injuries within minutes.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration, or OSHA, opened an investigation into the accident the day after the death was reported.

Clark’s death comes seven months after 51-year-old Martin Anthony died from a fall at Detyens Shipyard.

On June 27, 2019, North Charleston Police officers responded Dry Dock Avenue in response to a victim in cardiac arrest.

According to a North Charleston Police report, Anthony fell thirty to forty feet from a ladder on the ship while trying to do paintwork on the ship. The report states he was unresponsive and bleeding from his head with ‘deep lacerations on his head and face’.

Fire and EMS reported Anthony still had his harness with all the parts intact when they responded. According to the report, a witness said Anthony was wearing a ‘pole climber’ but it appeared it was not attached to the safety ring in place on the fixed object.

The death was investigated by the United States Coast Guard and did not involve OSHA.

On April 3, 2019, the North Charleston Police Department reported another death at Detyens Shipyard.

According to the police report, a supervisor said the victim was welding on one of the lifeboat arms when the cable holding the davit arm back snapped causing the davit arm to slide, pinning the victim against 3,640 lbs. of equipment.

The workers were reportedly able to the get the crane operators attention to slide the arm back so that the victim could be removed.

The victim was pronounced dead on the scene. At the time of the report, the victim was listed as John Doe.

The Occupational Safety and Health administration opened a case the same day as the accident.

The initial penalty against Detyens Shipyard is listed at $23,679. Following an informal settlement, the penalty was adjusted to $15,391.

According to OSHA, in November of 2017, an employee suffered multiple broken and fractured bones after falling from the brow to the ship deck.

OSHA issued a $3,455 penalty in response to the accident investigation.

OSHA’s investigation into David Clark’s death is ongoing along with a safety inspection opened on December 9, 2019.

Detyens Shipyard’s website lists safety as their ‘#1 priority.’

News 2 emailed Detyens for a comment. Their Sales and Marketing Director said, “Detyens Shipyards has no comment at this time and during any ongoing investigation.”

In 2015, OSHA issued 15 citations for fall, electrical and amputation hazards, according to the Department of Labor.